Big Springs Warming Hut

Yellowstone Branch Line Trail

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Overview

Big Springs Warming Hut is located 22 miles south of West Yellowstone, Montana in beautiful Island Park, Idaho at an approximate elevation of 6,300 feet. Visitors love Island Park for its world-class fishing and outstanding scenery and wildlife viewing opportunities.

Recreation

Big Springs is the headwaters of Henry's Fork and is one of the largest springs in the country. Henry's Fork is considered one of the best fisheries in the nation. Fly-fishermen cast for rainbow and brook trout. Tubing, canoeing, kayaking and rafting are also popular on the river.

The Big Springs National Recreation Water Trail can be accessed from the campground and ends 4.5 miles away at Macks Inn. It offers a lazy three-hour float or canoe trip through beautiful scenery. Wildlife, including moose, bald eagles and Sandhill cranes, are often seen along the trail.

The charming and historic John Sack Cabin is nearby, noted for its unique location, construction and furnishings.

Hiking, biking, horseback riding and ATVing are popular activities. Many miles of trails crisscross Island Park, including the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail and the Nez Perce Trail are in the area.

Facilities

The warming hut can accommodate up to 200 people. It is fully enclosed and has a concrete floor. Several picnic tables are inside, along with a wood-burning stove for cool weather. Electrical outlets and overhead lighting are provided inside the building. Outside there are picnic tables, grills and a campfire circle.

A very large parking area is on-site, with 20-amp electric hookups on the edge. Please note that there is no water on-site, but it is available at Big Springs Campground 2.5 miles away. Firewood can be purchased there also. A vault toilet is located next to the warming hut.

Natural Features

Island Park is composed of two areas of extinct volcanic activity. The Henry's Fork Caldera sits inside the larger Island Park Caldera.

The area is known for its dense forests of lodgepole pine, broad grassy meadows bursting with summer wildflowers and a wide variety of wildlife, including black and grizzly bears, moose, elk, deer, bald eagles, Sandhill cranes and much, much more.

The warming hut is surrounded by a forest of lodgepole pines. Grasses and summer wildflowers dot the landscape.

Nearby Attractions

Island Park Reservoir and Henry's Lake are nearby, both offer boating, water skiing, fishing, kayaking and canoeing. Numerous additional small lakes and streams are scattered throughout Island Park.

Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks are within a short drive, offering additional hiking and fishing, as well as outstanding scenery.

Macks Inn is 4.5 miles west. This full-service facility offers boat rentals, rafting, shuttle service, gas, groceries, showers and laundry facilities.

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